The governing People’s Party (PP) has abandoned the voting system it used during its primaries in the North, Centre and East that allowed all registered voters, regardless of their political parties, to vote.
Addressing the media in Blantyre on Friday, the party announced that only PP area members would be allowed to vote.
PP officials, led by acting secretary general Paul Maulidi and vice president for the South Sidik Mia, addressed shadow MPs and councillors at Comesa Hall to ensure smooth running of the primary elections.
The officials later addressed a news conference.
At the media conference, Mia said the party realised that opening voting to all registered voters put the party at a disadvantage as members from other political parties would mobilise and vote for a weaker PP candidate.
“We realised that they [members from other political parties] would put up a candidate they know they will easily defeat during the May 2014 parliamentary elections,” he said.
Mia said PP expects its members to remain loyal to the party even after losing the primaries.
“We have tried to be transparent in the manner we conduct our elections to avoid queries. We have advised our members not to stand as independents if they lose in the primaries. It is only that way that our party can remain strong,” he said.
Maulidi said contrary to reports of a possible rerun in Karonga Central, the result stands that Cornelius Mwalwanda would represent PP in the parliamentary race in May after he defeated Frank Mwenefumbo.
He said the party was still investigating other cases where there were disputes.